BUENOS AIRES, Oct 31 (Reuters) - Argentina called for a tender to buy 25 cargoes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) for delivery in 2014, a Buenos Aires-based industry source with knowledge of the situation told Reuters on Thursday.
Earlier this month, Argentina's state-run energy firm YPF picked BP to supply the bulk of its LNG needs in 2014 and 2015, following the South America nation's annual tender to secure approximately 5.57 million tonnes of the fuel.
The state-run firm also chose Spain's Gas Natural Fenosa (GNF) to deliver around 2.7 million tonnes of LNG.
Ten of the new cargoes to be tendered are for delivery into the Bahia Blanca import terminal, and the other 15 will be shipped to the country's other terminal at Escobar on the Parana River, said the source, who requested anonymity.
YPF, which brokers the fuel purchases on behalf of fellow state-run energy company Enarsa, declined to comment.
Fuel imports have been growing in Argentina due to a persistent fall in local production and an increase in demand, especially for gas.
Argentina's fuel imports rose 13.8 percent in September from the same month last year. Led by LNG purchases, fuel imports totaled $651 million for the month, according to data from Argentina's energy secretary.
Analysts forecast that fuel imports will reach some $14 billion this year. That's a worrisome figure for Argentina's government, which aims to keep the trade balance in surplus, as the country has been locked out of international capital markets since a 2002 sovereign default.